How to Remove Detergent Stains From Carpet

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Things You'll Need

  • Bucket

  • White vinegar

  • Sponge

  • Towels

  • Wet-dry vacuum or carpet cleaning machine


Clean up detergent spills as soon as they occur to prevent deep stains.


Do not flood the carpet with water, as you may damage the subflooring or create an environment where mold and mildew may grow.

Remove detergent stains from the carpet to prevent additional or deep staining.
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Detergent stains on carpets leave an area darker than the rest of the carpet. Accidental spills and drips landing on the carpet is typically the cause of detergent stains. Although any carpet is susceptible to a detergent stain, carpets in or near a laundry room are more prone to detergent stains than carpets in other areas of the home. Detergent stains on carpets detract from the beauty of the carpet. Removing the detergent stain from the carpet restores the carpet's visual appeal.


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Step 1

Fill a bucket with 1 gallon warm water and 1 cup white vinegar. Increase the amount of white vinegar to 1 1/2 cup if you live in an area that has hard water. White vinegar counteracts detergent buildup on textiles.

Step 2

Submerge a sponge in the water. Squeeze the water from the sponge over the detergent stain. Let the water soak into the carpet and detergent stain to loosen dried detergent that is stuck onto the carpet fibers.


Step 3

Lay a thick towel over the water-soaked stain and step on the towel to blot up the water and detergent. Continue to saturate the stain with water and sop up the excess moisture with a towel until the detergent stain disappears and no longer produces soapsuds. Use a dry towel each time you blot up excess moisture.


Step 1

Add 1 cup of white vinegar to 1 gallon of water. Mix 1 1/2 cups white vinegar into 1 gallon of water, if you have hard water.


Step 2

Pour the water and white vinegar over the stain to saturate the area. Let the water and vinegar sit on the stain and dissolve dried detergent.

Step 3

Vacuum the area with a wet-dry vacuum or carpet cleaning machine to remove the excess water and detergent from the carpeting.

Step 4

Continue to wet the area and vacuum until the detergent stain is no longer visible.


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